Volume 646, February 2021
|Number of page(s)||9|
|Section||Letters to the Editor|
|Published online||10 February 2021|
Letter to the Editor
Predicted spatial and velocity distributions of ejected companion stars of helium accretion-induced thermonuclear supernovae
Max Planck Institut für Astrophysik, Karl-Schwarzschild-Straße 1, 85748 Garching bei München, Germany
2 Yunnan Observatories, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Kunming 650011, PR China
3 Institut für Physik und Astronomie, Universität Potsdam, Haus 28, Karl-Liebknecht-Str. 24/25, 14476 Potsdam-Golm, Germany
Accepted: 15 January 2021
Context. Thermonuclear supernovae (SNe), a subset of which are the highly important SNe Type Ia, remain one of the more poorly understood phenomena known to modern astrophysics. In recent years, the single degenerate helium (He) donor channel, where a white dwarf star accretes He-rich matter from a hydrogen-depleted companion, has emerged as a promising candidate progenitor scenario for these events. An unresolved question in this scenario is the fate of the companion star, which would be evident as a runaway hot subdwarf O/B stars (He sdO/B) in the aftermath of the SN event.
Aims. Previous studies have shown that the kinematic properties of an ejected companion provide an opportunity to closer examine the properties of an SN progenitor system. However, with the number of observed objects not matching predictions by theory, the viability of this mechanism is called into question. In this study, we first synthesize a population of companion stars ejected by the aforementioned mechanism, taking into account predicted ejection velocities, the inferred population density in the Galactic mass distribution, and subsequent kinematics in the Galactic potential. We then discuss the astrometric properties of this population.
Methods. We present 106 individual ejection trajectories, which were numerically computed with a newly developed, lightweight simulation framework. Initial conditions were randomly generated, but weighted according to the Galactic mass density and ejection velocity data. We then discuss the bulk properties (Galactic distribution and observational parameters) of our sample.
Results. Our synthetic population reflects the Galactic mass distribution. A peak in the density distribution for close objects is expected in the direction of the Galactic centre. Higher mass runaways should outnumber lower mass ones. If the entire considered mass range is realised, the radial velocity distribution should show a peak at 500 km s−1. If only close US 708 analogues are considered, there should be a peak at (∼750 − 850) km s−1. In either case, US 708 should be a member of the high-velocity tail of the distribution.
Conclusions. We show that the puzzling lack of confirmed surviving companion stars of thermonuclear SNe, though possibly an observation-related selection effect, may indicate a selection against high mass donors in the SD He donor channel.
Key words: stars: kinematics and dynamics / binaries: close / supernovae: general / subdwarfs
© P. Neunteufel et al. 2021
Open Access article, published by EDP Sciences, under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Open Access funding provided by Max Planck Society.
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